Abbotsford's Baby McIntosh comes home from hospital

Infant born to mother with COVID-19 has come home, while his mom remains in Abbotsford hospital fighting for her life.

ABBOTSFORD, BC. Dave McIntosh and his new born son leaving Abbotsford hospital. The baby was born to an Abbotsford mom while she was in an induced coma due to COVID...............(Photo credit: Francis Georgian / Postmedia) , Vancouver. Vancouver Reporter: , ( Francis Georgian / PNG staff [PNG Merlin Archive]

An Abbotsford infant, whose mother is on life-support and fighting COVID-19 in the ICU, has finally come home.

“Today is a bittersweet day,” said David McIntosh in a statement. “I’m overjoyed that my newborn baby boy has been released from the hospital today.

“Although I’ve had the fortunate opportunity to spend time and cuddle him in the NICU for the past two weeks, it has been a long and difficult wait to officially welcome him home. We are devastated that his mom is still fighting for her life in the ICU with COVID-19 and not able to share in his homecoming.”

McIntosh said his wife, Gillian, is fighting hard but is still “very, very sick.” She remains in an induced coma on a ventilator, and her condition isn’t improving.

“The virus has caused significant damage to a majority of her lung tissue. If and when she is able to come off the ventilator, she is likely to have a lifetime of complications and will have difficulty caring for our children and returning to work,” he said.

A GoFundMe page to help support the family has exceeded $75,000. McIntosh hasn’t been able to return to his job as a machine operator for a Langley company and will have to stay home to care for his newborn son and the couple’s daughter, Gemma, 3.

Gillian McIntosh, 37, was 36 weeks’ pregnant when she was diagnosed with COVID-19 on Nov. 6. Shortly afterward she began to experience serious breathing difficulties. McIntosh was hospitalized and on Nov. 10 was put on a ventilator. Her medical team decided to deliver the baby by C-section that night.

Dave McIntosh was unable to meet his newborn son for 36 hours, while he completed COVID-19 quarantine. McIntosh and his newborn both tested negative for the virus. The family doesn’t know how or where Gillian McIntosh contracted the virus.

In a statement on the GoFundMe page, Dave McIntosh said: “Despite following all the recommendations from our health authorities, our family has learned first-hand the cruel and unpredictable nature of COVID-19.

“There are many things we can do to help others and limit risks in our world. Things like stopping at crosswalks or not drinking and driving, or smoking in restaurants, which all impact our freedoms, but we do them because they cost us little but can have a huge impact on someone else.”

Baby McIntosh doesn’t have a name yet — Dave McIntosh has said he’ll wait until his wife emerges from the coma so the couple can name him together.

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